Muzzling Minds All Over the Globe While Trumpeting Higher Order Skills

One of the hardest aspects for those of us who have grown up in free countries, especially the United States, is to grasp what it is like to live in a society committed to having its citizens think ideologically. Through the prisms of political theory. With the lens of  models supplied and practiced with until the filtering becomes quite unconscious. Reflexive. Habits of mind common to almost everyone that are at the core of perceptions and daily behavior.

I should have had this insight last Christmas when a friend who had grown up behind the Iron Curtain began to tear up at hearing some of my stories on what was being targeted and why. She knew ideological thinking from her childhood. Maybe it was reading that 1988 KEEP book I wrote about a week ago on creating the “dialectical growth of concepts” to be interpretive and integrative filters in each child’s mind. I was ready to really grapple with this painful aspect of the real implementation template of these global education reforms.

But I think the epiphany started with reading The Devil in History by Rumanian emigrant, now Maryland poli sci professor Vladimir Tismaneanu, and phrases like “their [the Communist regimes in the USSR and Eastern Europe] main weakness was a failure to muzzle the human mind.” Oh. Just imagine importing their theories and this time trying on an unsuspecting West via unappreciated education reforms. Describing from his experience, you can imagine my shock at reading descriptions of “conceptual frameworks” that “acted to make sense of general experience for all: all real phenomena could be judged against it and were ascribed value, form and essence in its light.” Do you know how often I have encountered conceptual frameworks in tracking the real Common Core? CRESST itself even told the Hewlett Foundation reassuringly that the actual assessments would be built around those, not the content standards.

Tismaneanu in describing the “continual assault on the mind” he associated with building new values and beliefs and a new Identity (and yes those terms do get used interchangeably in Ideological societies along with Worldview) reminds us pointedly that:

“However socially conditioned the individual’s thinking may be, however necessarily it may relate to social questions, to political action, it remains the thought of the individual which is not just the effect of collective processes but can also take them as its object.”

I have never lived in a society where it is considered “seditious” to maintain your individuality but plenty of people have and they have written about it. When I first wrote this alarming post on Yrjo Engestrom and where I saw the Global Cities Education Network taking us , I grasped that he did not sound like he was describing a dead philosophy or theories. But I did not yet know that in 1991 he wrote an essay called “Activity theory and individual and social transformation.” Gulp. That sounds just like the aspirations we have been encountering. And it took some searching but this weekend I located a copy. On the servers at Harvard Graduate School of Education as an assigned reading. Maybe to go with the 10 Cs I first described here? And if you are not sure yet we are dealing with ideology notice how often trains get used as the desired metaphor. I am just repeating all the uses. Which begins to make more sense once we know that (from the essay):

“Activity theory has its threefold historical origins in classical German philosophy (from Kant to Hegel), in the writings of Marx and Engels, and in the Soviet Russian cultural-historical psychology of Vygotsky, Leont’ev, and Luria.”

OK then. That also brings in Urie Bronfenbrenner and his Ecological Systems Theory that is at the center of the Common Core Social Studies Conceptual Framework. And Activity Theory is now centered at UC-San Diego and Michael Cole’s CHAT research which I have mentioned several times. But the very First International Congress on Activity Theory took place in Berlin in 1986 with Cole and Engestrom participating. That’s about the same time that Cole was thanking the Carnegie Corporation for financing the importation of psychology theories from “our Soviet colleagues.” Following up on the links between the term “Authentic Pedagogy” and Vygotsky and Cole’s work pulled up a 1987 seminal document I had never seen before. Published by the National Academies of Science and written by Lauren Resnick (who would co-chair the New Standards alternative assessment project in the 90s version of these ed reforms before serving on the Common Core creation panel) the document is called “Education and Learning to Think.”

That report, which I found on a server listed as a Common Core Precursor Document, is the source for the now ubiquitous term–Higher Order Thinking. And that document also thanks Cole and his Laboratory for Comparative Human Cognition for related work that Carnegie also was financing. Thanks a lot Andrew. Might have been better to let your heirs dissipate the fortune with too many mansions and gaudy vehicles. Since Higher Order Thinking is such an important term to today’s actual classroom emphasis under the Common Core and Texas version but also the ancestry of these ideas, let me quote Lauren’s definition with her italics intact. And remember this is for all children. Concepts and expansionary thinking for all you might say.

–Higher order thinking is nonalgorithmic. That is, the path of action is not fully specified in advance.

–Higher order thinking tends to be complex. The total path is not “visible” (mentally speaking) from any vantage point.

–Higher order thinking often yields multiple solutions, each with costs and benefits, rather than unique solutions.

–Higher order thinking involves nuanced judgment and interpretation.

–Higher order thinking involves the application of multiple criteria, which sometimes conflict with one another. [We have discussed in other posts how this type of mental dissonance can force the need for new mindsets and models.]

–Higher order thinking often involves uncertainty. Not everything that bears on the task at hand is known.

–Higher order thinking involves self-regulation of the thinking process. We do not recognize higher order thinking in an individual when someone else “calls the plays” at every step. [Here Lauren seems to be alluding to sequential, linear mathematics or science where you learn theories that someone else developed and proved. AKA traditional math and science]

–Higher order thinking involves imposing meaning, finding structure in apparent disorder. [If that reminds you of RECAST, David Perkins of Project Zero is listed as involved with this report].

–Higher order thinking is effortful. There is considerable mental work involved in the kinds of elaborations and judgments involved.”

Well, it is my belief that all those are euphemisms for saying higher order thinking is ideological. It is training students to think in terms of assigned categories and imagine different futures for everyone one involved. Planning. Imagining a different economic structure. Other ways to organize societies. Solutions for alleged catastrophes. Creativity that is not impeded by knowledge of what worked or led to catastrophe in the past. Not your own conceptual understandings as gifted students have developed them through the ages but supplied concepts and models and definitions.

There were more congresses on Activity Theory and they were absolutely chock full of Russian psychologists. Which actually makes sense as I will show you in the next post that CHAT and what is now called ISCAR–International Society for Cultural and Activity Theory–are related to the so-called New Thinking that Mikhail Gorbachev transitioned to in the mid-80s as part of perestroika. And why it appears that the restructurings were not just physical but also altered mindsets, values and beliefs, and new interpretive theories. Global this time.

Remember Davydov and his Ascending from the Abstract to the Concrete as the new mode of ideologically oriented systems thinking was called? He died in 1998 and was revered at that year’s ISCAR Congress in Copenhagen where his planned address was read instead. The most recent Congress was in 2011 in Rome, Italy. Guess which names showed up as part of the International Scientific Committee for that ISCAR conference? Why that would be Michael Cole, Yrjo Engestrom, and Lauren Resnick. Just in time to make sure the US Common Core implementation and assessments align with ISCAR philosophy and those higher order skills criteria from so long ago.

In case you are too busy to check, the described foundations of ISCAR fit perfectly with what Engestrom described above in 1991 as the source of Activity Theory. Which is also the current basis for most education degrees in the US. Especially the Masters and Doctorates.

Now I am just getting started on all the links involved. And I have read too much history not to have a perspective on what we are looking at here.

But I want you to get used to an idea that I have known for a while but this time approached through a new direction.

The Cold War simply did not end quite in the manner we believed. And the potentials of Activity Theory and a stealth noetic assault on Western values and beliefs appear to be the reasons we were played.

It was a good strategy but unfortunately the answers of why lie in history and political theory books I have now read.

Digest the above revelations and then we will talk some more. And no I am not speculating here. This is way too serious for conjecture. But it is fascinating too because it also makes perfect sense. Actually more sense than the spun stories once you get used to the idea.

27 thoughts on “Muzzling Minds All Over the Globe While Trumpeting Higher Order Skills

  1. The term ‘framework’ is all over the place today. Where did that come from? Also, another biggie is ‘protocols.’ This is found in collaboration-oriented professional development in schools. Collegial development groups, study groups, critical friends groups, lesson study groups—all of these are highly regimented approaches with prescribed norms, structure, roles, organization etc. They could be regarded as systemic approaches to limiting freedom of thought and expression among the participants.

    Kagan is riddled with protocols as well.

  2. The new term for Mastery Learning, Direct Instruction and Outcome Based Education is “guided reading”. Check it out on the web. Some opinion editor wrote in the Scottsdale, AZ section “State’s embrace of Common Core refreshing. ” He then interviewed a district school superintendent, principal and a third grade teacher. No names given in the article. Since I hold a M. A. in Reading and a B. A. in History, I’m following everything possible re CC.

    One thing the third grade teacher said that I think all will find interesting is: “Sometimes now I’ll ask questions that can’t be answered, only the students don’t know that.” (Arizona Republic/Scotttsdale section under opinions pp 29 and 30, May 11, 2013).

    By the way “guided reading” is nothing but the old Pavlov/Skinner methods being put on the computers. Robin, I’m sure you know this already. Thanks for all your great history and articles.

    • Yes the Common Core reading instruction is geared around Fountas & Pinnell who built upon Marie Clay’s work. That way you can count on what vocabulary and concepts the students have been exposed to through the accompanying books.

      You build up that progression. The spiral is actually laid out in Hegel’s work. These philosophical transformationists do not like genuinely independent minds full of well stocked info and their own conceptual understandings of how the world works. Might think they have no need for an administrative Overlord monitoring their wellbeing as OECD now has in mind.

    • Ann, that third grade teacher is trying to thwart my strategy of “Just give back some nonsense to the nonsense question” by mixing in nonsense questions with real ones. To force students to think about the nonsense questions. I’m glad my kids are a few years older than that. But elementary school was a real chore for both my kids, the time when I thought life would be carefree for them.

      Elementary school can get away with more weird behavioral stuff than later grades of school. Maybe homeschool then send the kids to school starting with middle school? It’s worth a thought. They are still defenseless babies in the elementary years, and the teachers don’t know much about any of the subjects anyway. I think about 1/3 of my kids’ elementary teachers were good and 2/3 were pretty bad, and the principals were mostly bad too with the exception of a great one who retired. And this was before CC really hit, so there were earlier versions of these twisted agendas, just not in the current form and maybe not as well developed. The educational establishment has been fairly twisted since before my kids started school, at least in my district.

  3. Remember that both Gorbachev and al Gore wrote in 1994 the forward to
    ” rescue mission planet earth ” agenda 21 for children. written by none other
    than the one and only Boutros Boutros Ghali and the United Nations.
    It is not a stretch when one is familiar with both US / Soviet Geopolitical history and education history. The problem is that the Cold War is a footnote now to most, say what? My Romanian friend who’s grandparents were disappeared when her father was 5 by the Soviets, they were intellectuals, knows what is going on. It breaks her heart.
    Someone said to me, when the Communists were defeated in Romainia in 1989, “where do you think they went “? ( Columbia U, ha ha)
    Al Gore did his part, danced with the devil and has run off with his millions burning the fossil fuel of a small nation independantly. oh but that is old news. However that old Gorbachev alliance and that old UN alliance in partnerships with academics and psycho social experts like Engstrom and Resnik keep popping up with Common Core. and the inclusion of all the junk science as Gospel in Common Core. While the soviet education system is Lauded in Liz Coleman”s ( david Coleman’s mother) TED talk, her delivery of her talk really speaks volumes. Her devotional syrupy like borsht tone when speaking of the Soviets leads one to beleive she might break into the mother tongue… but to me it is a good indicator of what we are dealing with. all roads lead to moscow.
    and higher order thinking, if you read the definition, just like authentic education and critical thinking and other slogans basically say ” do as WE wish you to “.
    they are PERELLI’S MIRACLE ELIXER. Why have so many teachers fallen for this?
    Are these people afraid because it makes no sense to them that they will look stupid, like the Emperors new clothes? because when I read all of these papers, they all say the same thing, blah blah blah do as I say, just a little differently…
    Hey by the by, Happy Mothers Day!!!!

    • Thank you. It was a lovely day.

      Here is what Gorby said in the blurb intro to the Rescue Mission book.

      ” The greatest challenge of both our time and the next century is to save the planet from destruction. It will require changing the very foundations of modern civilization–the relationship of humans to nature.”

      Changing the prevailing attitudes and beliefs and the filtering lenses that guide perceptions of daily experience certainly goes a long way towards changing culture and likely future actions.

      The authentic pedagogy comes from Fred Newmann and is very much guided by his political aspirations from adopting these radical psychology and philosophical theories to the classroom. But that history gets lost. Instead authentic comes across as superior. Almost like organic farming in how it sounds.

      I have two definitive sources for the next post that should make all aspects make far more sense.

      Hope you enjoyed your family yesterday as well.

    • Madmommy, in the case of my sixth grader, this year he has two bad teachers, for Social Studies (what else!) and Science. Both of them are agenda-driven in my view, sneaky and sinister. They are in cahoots with the principal, who is also new and about whom I can hardly say enough bad things.

      On the other hand, he has several other good teachers, two of them (math and English) very good and old-school, clearly fighting the system and preserving as much real education as possible, even using the new buzzwords to create a better educational experience. Wonder how long they’ll be able to get away with that …I am also pretty happy with his “minor” teachers such as shop and art. I’ve had some issues with music teachers but I think that’s because they are genuinely wacko.

      So in my experience here, teachers and administrators aren’t doing the spooky stuff for innocent reasons. They are in some way true believers, and they hate intellectuals and seek to subvert them in their tender formative years in a variety of ways. There’s a genuine tug-of-war going on within the faculty and administration, within the “team”, over these sorts of issues.

      • I agree with the tug of war happening. I also have one in 6th. Dislike very much one of his teachers, deluded believer. Social studies.
        You still have shop class??

        • The tug of war weapons to decisively shift compliance are pushing the veteran principals to retire and replacing them with idealogues in a hurry to get the lucrative promotions. Plus the teacher evals. The teacher evals under federal edict are tied to Student Growth which is changing values, attitudes, and beliefs. It’s not knowledge. In addition the new accreditation standards require collecting info on the physical, emotional, and social needs of each child.

          The Growth being measured is affective. The only knowledge sought is applying the desired and provided and frequently false Conceptual Understandings.

          I have already encountered several of the new Principals trained to be Change Agents and with the crazed look of zealotry in their eyes. They believe. Then they see former principals more than double their income if not more in just a few years advocating for these Learning Communities and nonacademic psychological emphasis in the classroom.

          My area high school has fine veteran teachers taking pay cuts to get out while the PTSA’s response to concerned parents is to insist that if you attend any meetings they are free to say anything and:

          –Please do not interrupt

          –You need to raise your hand and be called on for questions or comments

          –Please keep your comments/questions on topic

          –Be Respectful

          Apparently they are mad at me for having a problem with the decreased morale from having professional development from someone who touts Mao Tse Tung as an example of good leadership. Now we have lost more than half of the teachers in just over a year not wanting to be in the First Tier piloting all this crap and the PTSA says you cannot speak up unless sanctioned.

          Meanwhile the Governance Council is being chaired by the former district deputy super in charge of the Charter that puts the classroom emphasis on psychosocial skills. And she is running an ed consulting business selling her implementation prowess to other school districts while running the implementation of First Tier Conversion at the school.

          In education almost anything goes these days as long as it is designed to get the social change desired in the classroom and psychologically in the student.

          And they wonder why I know so much. Because unfortunately I am in a Ground Zero school and district and taking good notes of the planned abuses.

          • Yes, the up and coming administrators are all schooled with a view that they are leaders of learning communities. And as a ‘facilitator’ (code word) of these communities they rely heavily on ‘protocols’ for discussion. The protocols are tactics to keep unwanted opinions at bay. If you break a protocol then you’re like a barbarian, uncivilized, and treated as an outcast. And it reinforces their imagined superiority—unless you really turn the tables on them. Then you’re absolutely hated—but at least they take you seriously

          • Remember I have all of Ann Brown’s research on the history and purpose of Learning Communities. And how it is based on Vygotsky and Ann Brown came up with the idea while in the USSR during Cold War with Michael Cole of CHAT and Courtney Cazden of Discourse Classroom. Cazden and Brown and Cole are all mentioned by name as being involved with Resnick’s 1987 report.

            It would be hard to fictionalize so many connections.

            And frankly there are more than I have not described on blog because they are detailed in the book. But they are part of my working knowledge of what’s going on.

            Honestly at the PTA coffee they were trying to tout Spence Rogers and PEAK and I pointed out that they were describing the program differently than how PEAK describes itself. Well that was out of bounds.

            At this point I understand what is going on and need to simply use this nonsense and embraced conflicts of interest and use it to illustrate to other parents and taxpayers and teachers what is coming all over the US and elsewhere.

            There will be no contradictions of the official story. After all the Governance Council has had special training. Unfortunately it is in deceit and obtuseness and creating an enforcement mechanism that propels change instead of the kind of accountability parents imagine. And the involved parents think they are among the anointed, ignorant though they may be.

            Actually even if you have a good one, the accreditors insist that in case of a dispute the governance council is to defer to the principal. After all we have a revolution to put in place. And the political class and NGOs and institutions are mobilized for action and some people just do not have the desired consciousness yet.

            Maybe Orwell wasn’t satirical enough to capture these 21st century realities.

          • Robin, I am quite concerned about your comment that if the school board has a disagreement with the principal, the principal must have his or her way. You’ve also said the accreditors are interested in an ongoing relationship with the school. Does this mean that if the school board fights back, the accreditors can step in and (in the extreme case, which must be kept in mind during the pushing and shoving that ensues) yank the accreditation before its term is up?

            On another point, I must say that from your description the situation in your particular district sounds pretty bleak. If the school board is telling you to sit down and shut up, then they’ve been well trained. Short of getting them to read your blog here, I don’t see a way through for you within that district. As you describe it you have no significant allies there.

            In NY I am luckier than most, because we have further to fall. We have a roughly century-old tradition of content-based Regents Exams for high school graduation and a deep (in the old sense) intellectual culture that doesn’t assume all students can do all things, but that all students can find a niche doing something. And even here, I have a feeling all we can do is a sort of guerrilla action. We’ve taken the RTTT money, and if he remains in office and is able to rehabilitate his reputation only a little bit, Obama is surely going to try to make sure we do things his way.

          • Oh it’s not the school board in the district. And yes they have been told that if they get involved beyond hiring and firing the Super and reading the financials, the accreditor can yank accreditation for interference. The accreditors are driving this poison delivery. I have explained this in posts last summer. The accreditors are involved with UNESCO on driving this in higher ed and K-12 and now preschool. School boards especially in certain states like Georgia and Connecticut have their hands tied by statute.

            The problem is the local high school because the district has converted to a charter with a belief from the parents that that means solidifying control. The charter language is about soft skills and life skills and technology. Have you ever seen the post where I tracked the definition of life skills to a World Health Organization document? That it means psychosocial skills and is based on Albert Bandura’s psychology work? In furthering Paul Ehrlich’s ecological vision?

            The woman in charge of Governance who volunteered the school to relinquish its charter and be a First Tier School was in charge of that district conversion charter. Part of her consulting business is pushing them on other school districts. Nationally. ED Week featured the conversion charter when it went into effect last July and the district is participating in Harvard’s Strategic Data Project.

            It is the high achieving suburbs being forced to change so the dysfunctional Atlanta Public can be merged. It is the donut hole bisecting Fulton. APS was cheating because they had been pushing all these change minds and nurture grievances and limit literacy since about 1990. Like most urban schools. They have been deliberately kept dysfunctional in part because it adds community organizing. The urban areas are those ready to mobilize for action. It is now the suburbs and small towns under attack.

            Since I am aware of all this, I can supplement on the side. Because the accreditors have such control over the privates here because of the HOPE scholarship there are no real ports in the storm. I have plenty of private school teacher readers wondering how long they will be allowed to continue to teach. Most of the privates are converting to principals with ed degrees now instead of content degrees.

            I am sharing these personal stories instead of just the facts and theories so that the first time a reader discovers a School Governance Council is a rigged game they will know why. The Councils were designed to be and like the Learning Community and there is literature on using the herd effect and peer pressure.

            When you spend as much time in your head as I do, peer pressure is not a factor. I just know and understand this stuff. Bad behavior like this is in many ways just more data.

            And Smarick is very much an insider. He beautifully confirmed what I have been saying because those terms are just what is said in typical meetings only insiders attend. Muchas gracias to him.

  4. I love your articles, and I am looking into much of what you say. Would it be possible to link to some of the original documents demonstrating your points? I would like to read the quotes and theories in context. I am a retired, but still certified, teacher. I am very concerned about Common Core and I would like to be as informed as possible. Thanks for the good work.

    • Sara,

      My experience is that links on university servers will not stay up for as long as it takes you to read the email if I give the IP address. So I usually give a sufficient description to enable the document to come up in a search. If the link is accessed through a blog, whoever administers the server can see they are getting traffic from a certain blog and check out why. Then the document is gone from prying eyes. Searches do not tip off like that and usually allow several days if not indefinitely that it can be located with a search by name, author, year. There is nothing cited in this post not obtainable that way. Quite a bit comes up just searching out the first congress activity theory and one of these names.

      Virtually everyone involved in some troubling aspect of developing the theory internationally that is the real ed reform seems to be involved in that 1987 document that was reprinted through about 94. About the time standards ran into bad PR. People like Carol Dweck and Ann Brown and Courtney Cazden and Marcia Linn that remain important today. In Ann’s case posthumously through her Fostering Communities of Learners grounded in Vygotsky.

      You can also contact me through the Contact Us and I will frequently give the precise IP that way. Right now the only thing from the last several posts that I am holding back is the precise name of the 1988 book. I am still using it. I doubt it would remain available used if I let go of the name.

  5. Thank you for the tips about the searches. I often wondered if that is why a lot of documents seem to be missing.

    • You are welcome. Let me know if you cannot locate but you should be able to. I have had this discussion and this seems to work better. It increases the number of readers who get a chance to download and hard copy.

      I obviously do all that before anyone knows I am looking. The 1991 Engestrom article is hiding under the name of the 1999 book it became chapter 1 of. I had never heard of it but it was mentioned in the footnotes of a Neil Mercer book The Guided Construction of Knowledge.

      ISCAR was previously known as ISCRAT–the International Society for Cultural Research and Activity Theory. I had a good time reading the various presentations and who gave them through the various congresses.

      Also in your searches the good stuff is usually on page 3 or so. My info should be specific enough to pull up on page 1 but I probably originally pulled it up further down. Also I have had people tell me things are no longer available while my link remains valid.

  6. Along with perestroika (restructuring) was glasnost’ (clarity). Common Core’s process is the opposite of clarity. Instead of clarity, we get the mushroom theory.

    I guess the idea of this stupid Activity Theory is to prevent our children from standing on the shoulders of the giants in the past. Confuse them for long enough and they won’t understand or be willing to tolerate linear thinking.

    Already I see some of this in our middle school here, with the sheer overwork on open-ended assignments leaving little time for quiet reflection. The assignments are certainly “effortful” and I’ve had to instruct (and keep instructing) my gifted sixth grader just to write down some crap and hand it in, otherwise it takes him forever. Doesn’t seem to affect his grade so it’s definitely the way to go, and now he thanks me for pushing him efficiently through these endless-seeming assignments. The ones assigning the most tedious time-consuming work happen to be the teachers are ideologues; who are jerks. Students have a tendency to respect their teachers, but it’s becoming important to temper that and respect only the teachers who are willing to dispense wisdom. There’s no reason to respect someone who is putting thru the “student-centered” experience.

    If we can’t beat this thing directly, we should write a Common Core Survival Manual for students. “Just write down some crap and hand it in.” will be my contributed pearl of wisdom for this project. Who knows how “effortful” it was for you anyway? In Soviet Russia you pretended to work and the State pretended to pay you, so it fits right in! It’s good for mental health to know when to exert effort (when it will gain you some result or some wisdom) and when not to (when you’re being brainwashed.)

    Robin I eagerly await what you’ve found about the carryover from the Cold War and what Gorbachev and his cronies are up to. I’ve seen allusions to it elsewhere but it’s been too sketchy.

    • David-

      It is something I develop in the book because I kept coming across such open declarations to what was going on that about the 5th tripover I decided it was an integral part of the story.

      Here I am coming at it from a completely different direction without trying and one of the award winning sources is describing the official version as based on Ilyenkov’s rethinking of dialectics around 1960. It will become the basis for Humanist Marxism which will lose the M word to better sell itself especially via education curricula. I have a book that was published first in Germany around 1970 and later translated to English. What it describes as its hopeful vision for the future ties with the official version of Gorby’s New Thinking and our facts even better.

      And Activity Theory globally is the method because you ditch the knowledge that would impede creativity about what is possible in the future. Instead of culture as the best that has been thought over the ages, it is culture as in prevailing thoughts, values, and behavioral practices. Those can be changed via education over time. That’s the real reason for the emphasis on evolution. Biological evolution is slow and spontaneous. Cultural evolution can be manipulated over decades and has been. It is just not sufficiently appreciated. Instead it gets attributed to “our schools are not working let’s try something else.” Well they weren’t working because of earlier attempts to ignite such massive cultural change.

      Cultural-Historical Activity Theory. You use education to change prevailing culture by targeting values, attitudes, beliefs, and feelings that in turn propel action. That drives a progression of history towards a desired future. With some new categories and some adaptations you are back on track towards an administered society in the name of equity and justice and preventing environmental catastrophe.

      Now anyone with life experience in the private sector not part of Cronyism can see this is a recipe for cutting off the spigots that fund everything but we are not at the table hatching these plans. But I have read them so I am writing about them. Education and the Common Core are expressly merely vehicles for something far more toxic. And I am not being ideological. It is why I read so much before writing. I nail down the related history to be sure.

  7. All this would point to the Goracle bding complicit. His bloated hit and run of global warming. His relation to Gorby from at least 94.
    His sudden descendence into his billion dollar bunker, only lobbing out a press release now and then.
    Dude sold his soul straight up.

    Another point is Rethinking Education, Rethinking Math an obvious nod to Ilyenkov, never imagined to be discovered. Ha.

    And thirdly, my newest haul from amazon has arrived and i am fascinated digging into:
    Jean Piaget a most outrageous deception, by Webster R. Calloway. He discovered while writing a book on early reading that Piaget used the word biology with Two completely different meanings even in the same sentence. He pitched his original project and focused on this. It definatly makes sence to those of us researching the slogans such as critical thinking and the seriously deranged occultist higher order thinking, well they really jumped the shark there. To anyone with a brain this is suspicious and odious.
    So my book is revealing maybe the grandaddy of this phenomenon. Which brings me to phenominology of spirit and piagets possible plagerizing Hegel.
    Ha! Luv it.

    • Gore was at a conference in the USSR in 1990 that seems to have set up the strategy on the Envmt. If I remember right he was there with Armand Hammer.

      I did not get a chance to go through the attendant Systems 2 values but they are: Peace, Economic and Personal Wellbeing, Human Dignity, and Ecology.

      Falk also explicitly mentioned Jay Forester’s work on world systems modelling which is of course who Peter Senge and Otto Scharmer cite. He also mentions the Club of Rome and it Limits to Growth as pushing a related vision.

      This is just one example of what insiders knew. I have a whole lot more but this is relevant to CHAT and the Conceptual Understanding we have been zeroing in on.

      from yesterday confirms what I have been saying. The purpose of the New assessments is to monitor higher order thinking skills. Just like Lauren Resnick outlined in that 1987 report from the previous post. That’s not knowledge. In fact knowledge expressly gets in the way of that kind of creativity. I just updated this link on Friday, May 17, 2013 to reflect Ed Week now promoting this interview as definitive.

      Notice Smarick also mentions deep learning thus embracing the Hewlett Foundation’s definition of it that I have written about as well as that CRESST report they did for Hewlett. Maybe he doesn’t actually know what all the terms he mentions mean but we do. And Fordham should before continuing to push an implementation that has little to do with the content standards they reviewed and trumpet.

      I would say that also embraces that Senge and Kegan report dated July 4, 2012 done for Hewlett on the actual Common Core implementation I also wrote about.

      It will be a tough comparison to determine the greater scam Climate Change or education. Unfortunately I know which one goes for Irreversible Change as Michael Barber and Vicki Phillips called it.

      • That edexcellence link you give is very convincing. It uses probably more than half the buzzwords you’ve been discussing here. One after another, like mantras. There are hardly any normal English sentences in it!

  8. So I take it, then, you are writing a book? I am certainly grateful to you if that is the case.

    Interestingly, the techniques for controlling group discussions seems to be the methods being used in other areas of public discourse as well. I have been seeing this for a number of years, and until about a year ago, I didn’t know just what was happening, although I kept feeling as if something wasn’t quite right. I knew it had to do with group think and fear of marginalization, and the need to belong, but I didn’t realize it was being done purposefully using psychology as a basis.

    All very odd.

    • Sara,

      I wrote a book and then uncovered both the Planet Under pressure Conference and then what was coming in quietly under federal disabilities law. So I started the blog knowing I needed to start yelling we had a five alarm fire to try to bring the water over to douse the flames. Then I could tell what was going on and how we got here.

      The blog became more than that as everything was moving so fast but I am working to get book out around Labor Day. As this truly begins in earnest.


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